the lotus

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The Lotus

The Lotus in Buddhism is a sacred symbol in Buddhism that represents purity and resurrection. Growing in murky mud, but blooming right above it, the Lotus flower in Buddhism refers to a higher thought state of mind than that of the mud that exists below. Though growing in the dimness of swamps, the Lotus flower remains untouched and thus signifies the purity of the mind and spirit. Having grown through the mud, symbolic of the suffering and temptations of this World, the Lotus flower ultimately represents spiritual awakening.

This higher level of interpretation of the Lotus exists universally, in ancient Egypt, Hinduism, and Buddhism; and perhaps the focus of this interest is not so much in the flower itself, but the mud that it grows over. As gorgeous and interesting the Lotus flower is, just as interesting is its’ roots of swamps, an unlikely home for something so delicate and lively. A seed has no choice in where it lands, yet commits to growing into a plant from the environment where it lands. We must act upon our lives and where we come from with the same determination a simple seed continues to struggles in the ferocious influences of nature. From this struggle a beautiful flower it becomes and makes the world more beautiful in it’s own way.

Hard times will force you to doubt yourself and will question the authenticity of who you are. People will not see what you are seeing and have difficulties of where you are heading. The situation will never be just right, always being a little short on time or money. And through it all, you must carry the lotus within you. To be true to you and to know your purpose of growth and progress. We are meant to grow, progress, and evolve in this unforgiving environment of the World and through it all achieve happiness yet, in this will require letting go.

Loss is an arduous attribute of life, and loss through a self-elected choice of letting go is no different. The process of growing will require letting go and sometimes we will be asked to let go of things that we have always wanted or would never consider letting go, but a tree doesn’t hesitate to let her leaves fall when it time and still lives on when branches may befall. Letting go means to accept that something or someone have shared a purpose within our lives, however having its’ own path that is independent to us and to of all people. Like all existence of life, it was meant to teach us a lesson of life, and to this we must appreciate, however nothing will run along parallel to that of our own lives forever. Accept that these people and these situations to have their own reasons for occurring, and allow them to be off on their path, for they aren’t here merely for our existence or our convenience. To rise above the suffering of life, is a choice that humans must establish within their own minds with the same image of a lotus growing above the murky waters. We are the lotus, rise above.

Namaste,

Forrest Curran

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to study the way

“To study the Way is to study the Self. To study the Self is to forget the self. To forget the self is to be enlightened by all things of the universe. To be enlightened by all things of the universe is to cast off the body and mind of the self as well as those of others. Even the traces of enlightenment are wiped out, and life with traceless enlightenment goes on forever and ever.”

Genjōkōan // Dõgen (via danebell1)

this is the Buddha

“Let go of and forget your body and mind; throw your life into the abode of the Buddha, living by being moved and led by the Buddha. When you do this without relying on your own physical or mental power, you become released from both life and death and become a Buddha. Do not immerse yourself in mental or emotional struggles. Refrain from committing evil. Neither be attached to life or death. Be compassionate towards all sentient beings. Revere that which is superior and do not withhold sympathy for that which is inferior. Do not harbour hatreds nor covet anything. Do not be overly concerned with trivial matters nor grieve over difficulties in your life. This is the Buddha. Do not search for the Buddha anywhere else.”

Dogen Zenji, Shobogenzo (via leelou108)

Buddhism summarized

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Buddhism Summarized

I’ve posted this before but I thought it might be helpful to some of the new people if I posted it again. Sam.

THE THREE TRAINING PRACTICES

Sila: Virtue, good conduct, morality.

Samadhi: Concentration, meditation, mental development. Developing one’s mind is the path to wisdom which in turn leads to personal freedom. Mental development also strengthens and controls our mind; this helps us maintain good conduct.

Prajna: Discernment, insight, wisdom, enlightenment. This is the real heart of Buddhism. Wisdom will emerge if your mind is pure and calm.

THE FOUR NOBLE TRUTHS

Dukkha: Suffering exists:(Suffering is real and almost universal. Suffering has many causes: loss, sickness, pain, failure, the impermanence of pleasure.)

Samudaya: There is a cause for suffering.(It is the desire to have and control things. It can take many forms: craving of sensual pleasures; the desire for fame; the desire to avoid unpleasant sensations, like fear, anger or jealousy.)

Nirodha: There is an end to suffering. (Suffering ceases with the final liberation of Nirvana (a.k.a. Nibbana). The mind experiences complete freedom, liberation and non-attachment. It lets go of any desire or craving.)

Magga: In order to end suffering, you must follow the Eightfold Path.

THE EIGHTFOLD PATH

Panna: Discernment, wisdom:

1) Samma ditthi: Right Understanding of the Four Noble Truths

2) Samma sankappa: Right thinking; following the right path in life
Sila: Virtue, morality:

3) Samma vaca: Right speech: no lying, criticism, condemning, gossip, harsh language

4) Samma kammanta Right conduct by following the Five Precepts

5) Samma ajiva: Right livelihood; support yourself without harming others
Samadhi: Concentration, meditation:

6) Samma vayama Right Effort: promote good thoughts; conquer evil thoughts

7) Samma sati Right Mindfulness: Become aware of your body, mind and feelings

8) Samma samadhi Right Concentration: Meditate to achieve a higher state of consciousness

The Five Precepts:

Do not kill.

Do not steal.

Do not lie.

Do not misuse sex.

Do not consume alcohol or other drugs.

Remember Buddhism does not command.

wise words

That which helps you in your spiritual evolution is right. That which obstructs and hinders your spiritual evolution is wrong. That which leads to unity of Self is right. That which leads to separation is wrong. To do good to others, to serve and to help others, to give joy to others, is right. To give pain to others, to injure others, is wrong.

-Swami Suryadevananda